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Drs. Cunningham, Crosby part of STEM improveme

9/06/2012

Professors Dr. Karen Crosby and Dr. Katrina Cunningham are representing Southern University in the Preparing Critical Faculty for the Future (PCFF) project which focuses on improving education in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) courses.

 

The PCFF project, sponsored by the National Science Foundation’s Historical Black Colleges and Universities-Undergraduate Program, connects women of color STEM faculty member from HBCUs around the country to engage in national dialogue to improve undergraduate STEM education.

 

The PCFF conducts a series of activities to teach leadership skills and abilities, and to introduce female HBCU faculty to innovative teaching techniques to incorporate into the classroom and laboratory practice.

 

Crosby, an associate professor in mechanical engineering and Cunningham, assistant professor and chair of mathematics, presented a project in July at a Leadership Development activity for PCFF held at the University of Vermont.

 

Their project to redesign one of the math courses focuses on improving supplement activities and to give the faculty at Southern an opportunity to develop and improve courses in STEM and other disciplines.

 

Crosby and Cunningham are being mentored by Dr. Diola Bagyoko, professor and Chair of the Physics Department,  Dr. Ella Kelley, interim assistant provost, and Dr. Alma Thornton, Director of the Center for Social Research. They have the support from faculty to administration to push the project through.

 

“Hopefully this course will allow the faculty to push forward and make sure students in STEM courses are competent to be successful in graduate school and the professional world,” said Crosby.

 

Crosby is aiming to have the course operating on the campus for the spring of 2013 and she hopes that it leads to the development of courses in other disciplines.

 

“In implementing the project, we have high hopes in improving students in STEM and other disciplines. We want to increase the students’ level of success,” said Cunningham.

 

Crosby and Cunningham will continue to represent Southern in future PCFF projects and the improvement of STEM education.